MoH rolls out immunisation coverage guideline

MoH rolls out immunisation coverage guideline

The Ministry of Health yesterday launched an immunisation coverage guideline for South Sudan.

The “every child immunisation strategy guideline” involves the inputs of the World Health Organisation, UNICEF, and USAID and it aims at addressing the inequity of coverage, and resilience in immunisation programs across the country.

Addressing the media during the launch, the Director General for Primary Health in the Ministry of Health, Atem Nathan Riak, said the guideline aims at improving the country‚Äôs current coverage of immunisation from the current 80 per cent to over 95 per cent. 

“Places like Juba, where many children are not covered because their mothers are busy and sometimes at work, are the kind of children that we want the strategy to help us reach,” Atem said. 

“Since the five-year plan elapsed, we have received funding from Gavi [and] that is why we have developed another five-year health plan that will guide the ministry in the implementation of Reach Every Child immunisation,” he stressed.

Dr. Fabian Ndenzako, the representative of the World Health Organisation (WHO) in South Sudan, said the launch of the Reach Each Child Immunisation strategic document is a significant step towards attaining universal immunisation coverage in South Sudan.

Fabian said the strategy would accelerate progress towards the Immunisation Agenda of 2030 Goals, the Triple Billion Goals, and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

The immunisation manager for UNICEF South Sudan, Dr. Victor Sule, said the Reach Every Child immunisation guideline comes at the right time when the global community is witnessing a lack of progress in immunisation coverage and a rise in the number of zero-dose children across the world.

“Recently world immunisation week was celebrated, and UNICEF`s State of the World`s Children (SOWC) 2023 was released, both events underscored the need to address the global rise of zero dose and under-vaccinated children, putting it at about 12.4 million without basic, routine vaccine every year,” Sule said.